7 Free Christmas Activities Around Ottawa That Will Make You Feel Like A Thrifty Elf
Ho ho hold onto your wallet.🎅🏻
The most wonderful time of the year can quickly become the most expensive, but that doesn't mean you need to miss out on holiday events in Ottawa.
You don't have to bring your wallet to these Christmas activities around Ottawa. From European-style markets to magical light shows and a festive scavenger hunt, here are seven free activities to enjoy around the city this season.
Wander through a European-inspired market
When: Select dates from November 25 to December 23, 2022
Address: Aberdeen Plaza, 1000 Exhibition Way, Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Go: The Ottawa Christmas market has chalet-style vendor booths and tons of holiday decor. You can sip mulled wine, eat German sausage, visit Santa, join a festive workshop and more.
Visit an 'Elf'-themed house
Christmas house in Ottawa decorated in an 'Elf'-inspired theme.
Price: Free, donations welcome
When: Starting December 1, 2022
Address: 18 Cypress Gardens, Stittsville, ON
Why You Need To Go: For the third year in a row, this neighbourhood home is transforming into a Christmas paradise and this year it's themed around the holiday movie Elf. You can admire over 100 props and scenes from the film, including the Gimbels store sign to the candy cane forest.
Watch a magical light show downtown
When: Select dates December 8, 2022, to January 8, 2023
Address: Parliament Hill, 111 Wellington St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Go: Winter Lights Across Canada is coming back with twinkly lights downtown and projection shows on Parliament Hill. The light show on Parliament features colourful Canadian landscapes and is set to music. It's shown on a 15-minute loop, Thursday through Monday starting at 5:30 p.m.
Enjoy a small town lights festival
When: From November 19, 2022, to January 3, 2023
Address: Crystal Palace, 28 Drummond St. E., Perth, ON
Why You Need To Go: The town of Perth is hosting a Festival of Lights and you can admire sparkling Christmas trees in a glass Crystal Palace. The Palace will host events such as the Christmas at the Palace night on December 10 with a choir singing. There are other holiday events around town like a fireworks show and bonfire on December 2.
Browse a Christmas store
When: Open year-round
Address: 1096 Somerset St. W., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Go: It feels like Christmas all year round at Tinseltown Christmas Emporium. The store is brimming with holiday decor and ornaments in all shapes and sizes and you can browse for fun additions to your home.
Admire an indoor wonderland of evergreens
When: From November 28, 2022, to January 2, 2023
Address: 1 Rideau St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Go: Trees of Hope has returned to the lobby and hallways of the Fairmont Château Laurier. There are 32 beautifully decorated trees and you can vote via QR code for your favourite as well as donate to the CHEO foundation if you can.
The hotel also has festive menus such as holiday afternoon tea and a new Christmas pop-up bar to get extra festive this year.
Go on a holiday hunt for snowflakes
Friends hunting for snowflakes in a store window.
When: From December 3, 2022, to January 8, 2023
Address: Preston Street, Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Go: The Preston Street Holiday Hunt is a new outdoor scavenger hunt game created by Lockdown Ottawa. You'll search around Little Italy looking for snowflakes in order to help put a snowman back together. You can register online for free and have the chance to win prizes.
Before you get going, check out our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.
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